Health

Dog ear: Five ways of preventing dog ear problems

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Are you looking for information on how to prevent dog ear problems?  What is the proper way to clean dog ears?  Dog ears come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes but despite the difference in the appearance of dog ears, they all share one thing in common; all dog ears have an excellent sense of hearing.

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Because of the delicate structure in the dog ears, both the outer and inner ear, it is very important to prevent dog ear problems before they occur.  Below are five useful tips to help you prevent dog ear problems and suggestions on how to properly clean them.

  1. Gently wedge some cotton into the outside ear opening before giving your dog a bath. This procedure ensures that no water drops into the dog ears.
  2. Dog ears should be cleaned about once a month. The process of cleaning dog ears can be done using a cotton swab dampened in either alcohol, diluted peroxide, mineral oil, or a cleansing product that is recommended by your vet. Using gentle strokes, carefully wipe around the folds of both the inner dog ear opening as well as the exterior dog ear opening, lifting away the wax build up. Make sure that you do not bury the wax deeper into the dog ear.  To ensure that you do not damage the delicate structure of the inner dog ear, clean only the parts of the dog ears that are clearly visible.  Keep in mind that wax protects the dog ear canal.  Therefore, in finishing the process, make sure to leave some wax behind.  This will also delay cleaning the dog ears if there has been a few wax build up from the previous cleaning.
  3. If your dog has a habit of running in brushes and tall grass, make sure to check under the dog ear flaps. Vegetative substance can get attached to the fur surrounding the dog ears.  If this substance is not promptly removed, it can lodge inside the ear that causes irritation to the membranes.  This leads to ear infections.
  4. Specific breeds such as English Spaniels and Poodles can have extreme hair in the ears that can obstruct air circulation and causes infection. To prevent this dog ear problem from happening, everyday combing and regular trimming of the hair around the dog ears are required.
  5. Injuries and cuts right under the inner dog ear flaps can rapidly become infected.  Make sure to always check your dog ears for any injured tissue, especially if he has been in a fight with another animal.
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